Maisons-Laffitte internment camp #france


Paul Gottlieb
 

My father was held at the Maisons-Laffitte internment/registration camp outside Paris for at least a few weeks, if not more, as the war began. He was Austrian, and thus considered to be an "enemy alien" at the time. However, I have found very little information on-line about this camp other than the image of a single postcard and a reference that Jews were held in the stables.
Any further information about this camp (or suggestions on where to look) would be appreciated. Also, does anyone think that a listing of prisoners is still obtainable? Thanks in advance.
Paul Gottlieb
New York City


Bernard Flam
 

Hi from Paris,

Dear Paul,

 

My GGF and GF were Galizianer, immigrating with an Austrian citizenship to France in 1925.

Thus they have been submitted to these laws concerning German & Austrian citizens as soon WWII started in September 1939.

I had never heard neither read about Maisons-Laffitte camp before your post.

 

But I knew what happened to my family's men, my GGF, his 2 sons and my GF as son-in-law.

They have been interned in a small camp in Paris, called "Stade Buffalo" (because Buffalo Bill presented his cow-boy show there) during a few days or weeks.

Then they have been transported to a larger camp, Meslay du Maine, where they were detained during ca. two months, before 1939 end.

Detention conditions were fair, according to their testimonies and I have some pictures taken by them.

Remember that during this period, it was still "phoney war", blitzkrieg started in April 1940.

 

In these camps, Austrian / German Jews could quite easily make choice to enroll French "Foreign Legion" or some GTE, Groupe de travailleurs étrangers, foreign workers group, to replace at work young French citizens who have been mandatory enrolled due to national mobilization.

 

Most of these has been sent to North Africa French territories (Full French Department as Algeria, Protectorat as Marocco and Tunisia) as not being in situation to fight directly nazis soldiers.

 

After French surrender and occupation of northern part of country, these Legionnaires have been discharged in southern and not occupied part of France.

 

Some stayed there, some returned to Paris.

 

The fact of being former French Legionnaire didn't prevent any of them to suffer risk of deportation as any others Jews in France. A lot have been killed.

Fortunately, all mine survived.

 

Back to your question.

 

With a quest on French Google "Maisons Laffitte camp internement 1939", I found 4 - 5 good references.

I attach one, but how is your French ? I know, nobody is perfect...

 

It seems that like "Stade Bufalo", Maisons-Laffitte camp had been used for a short while because it was not far from Paris, before transferring detainees to larger camps in France.

 

At this moment, I guess we can get some data on the camp but I am not sure names lists could be archived. I check.

 

Khavershaft

Bernard Flam

Archives & history of Medem Center - Arbeter Ring ( Bund-Workmen Circle of France)

 


Paul Gottlieb
 

My GGF and GF were Galizianer, immigrating with an Austrian citizenship to France in 1925.Thus they have been submitted to these laws concerning German & Austrian citizens as soon WWII started in September 1939.I had never heard neither read about Maisons-Laffitte camp before your post.

Dear Bernard,
Thank you for your kind response. I believe my father, Maximilian Gottlieb, was required to register at Maisons-Leffitte as an enemy alien as the war began (he was living in Paris), but he was held there for a relatively short time. By February, he obtained his visa at the American embassy in Bordeaux, and he left for the US in March. Of course, anything else you find would be most appreciated.
Perhaps you saw an earlier post of mine asking if anyone know about a membership card that he had for the so-called "Legion Etrangere Civile de France". (Sorry don't know how to type accent marks.) It was an association registered under the 1901 law,
but the only reference I can find (after quite extensive research) is the notice of that association in the Official Journal. My guess is that he tried to use that card to gain, or to maintain, his freedom. 
Thank you.
Paul Gottlieb



Thank you for your assistance.
Paul Gottlieb